|  Blog Post   |  Perhaps normal is long gone.

Perhaps normal is long gone.

I am beginning to believe that impending change is going to be tougher than long-term uncertainty.

The more I talk with organizations I have worked with and those seeking my help…. the more I talk with my husband Chad about things at his organization both as a courage facilitator and his wife… the more I hear from my friends (thank you for such curious and courageous conversations Dani KowalczykKelli Grelles, PHR, SHRM-CP, BFA™, CHSA®Ryan McCrea, MA, and Becki Feldmann these last few weeks)…

If you think the last two years were difficult, I think the next two to four years are going to be much harder.

We are only beginning to see and feel the ramifications of the last two years in our families and in our organizations.

The different needs, all the feelings and opinions, the things and time we got back that we aren’t willing to give back, the natural moving forward and getting back together, the desperate need for connection all while needing to learn how to reconnect, the difficulty in staying curious and extending grace, all on top of the high workload, supply chain hardships, staff shortages, and navigating how to return to “normal.”

May we also not forget that the physical, spiritual, emotional, and mental harm from the last two years of life has yet to truly come to the surface for many of us.

Perhaps normal is long gone.

Except there were things about our normal that were maybe never okay or healthy. Perhaps it is truly time to let those go and grieve it if we need to so we can receive our healing and create anew.

May we turn toward one another and do this together, in connection and building trust, and choosing courage.
We need it, and we are worthy of it.


Justine is a Licensed Professional Counselor with more than 25 years of experience in traditional mental health and personal and professional development. Justine has been certified in the work of Dr. Brené Brown for ten years. Justine is the author of eleven books, including five Amazon bestsellers covering subjects such as infertility, faith, and grief. She has been honored to do two TEDx Talks, The Permission of the And and The Donut Effect. She travels nationally and presents virtually to global audiences delivering keynotes, workshops, retreats, and trainings on topics such as leadership, courage, resilience, mental health, preventing and coping with burnout, and courageous and curious conversation, especially in creating cultures of belonging and diversity, equity, and inclusion. Justine lives in St. Louis with her husband Chad, their three dogs, and for four months of the year hundreds of monarch and swallowtail butterflies.

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